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Plans for 322 homes at Flowserve site in Balderton are rejected by Newark and Sherwood District Council’s planning committee

A proposal for 322 homes on the Flowserve site in Balderton would bring more problems that it would solve, a planning committee was told.

Plans to redevelop the brownfield site were refused by Newark and Sherwood District Council’s planning committee.

Flowserve access on Hawton Lane, Newark. Credit: Google Maps (40249080)
Flowserve access on Hawton Lane, Newark. Credit: Google Maps (40249080)

It was referred to committee because of its size and lack of developer contributions, and further concerns were raised over parking.

Lydia Hurst, ward member for Balderton South, said: “The parish council is in support because if it is not developed, it would be a waste ­— but we have concerns over the access and the emergency access.

“When the original factory was built in 1899 there was not any traffic but, now we are in 2020 and have Middlebeck and Fernwood being developed, it will only increase traffic coming on to Hawton Lane.

“Maybe the 30mph speed limit proposed by the applicant will help but it won’t solve it.”

Access to the site would be via the existing drive off Hawton Lane and the emergency access off Lowfield Lane to the south-east corner. Access would be maintained to Flowserve premises and its social club.

Of the emergency access, Mrs Hurst said: “There’s a whole community of people who walk down that lane, walking their dogs. There are no pavements and it’s very dangerous. I don’t see how it will work if there are emergency vehicles coming through.

“In previous times (2004) there have been applications to build on Lowfield Lane that have been turned down because of the dangerous nature of the lane.

“The parish also has concerns about the sewerage. In 2005, we were told it needed upgrading, but it has never been done.”

A contribution of £275,000 has been put forward by the developer for open space — a significant shortfall — because of the substantial contamination and remedial works of the brownfield land.

Committee member Maureen Dobson said more investigation should have been done before the applicant began to demolish the buildings on site.

She said: “Everyone knew there would be a lot of nasties in there and I’m not happy we are going to have a shortfall.

“I’m not minded to approve this at all and I’m certainly not happy about the social housing.”

The county council highways department raised no objections. However, member Keith Walker said the increase in traffic would be ridiculous.

The Environment Agency listed conditions to ensure flood works were carried out but raised no objections.

Planning member Yvonne Woodhead added: “He (the applicant) is trying to have his cake and eat it. No affordable housing, no developer contributions.

“The layout does look a bit cramped and it would bring more problems than it would solve — brownfield or not.”

The application was refused on grounds of parking, lack of affordable housing and lack of developer contributions.

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